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Indoor PM2.5 exposure in London's domestic stock: Modelling current and future exposures following energy efficient refurbishment

Shrubsole, C; Ridley, I; Biddulph, P; Milner, J; Vardoulakis, S; Ucci, M; Wilkinson, P; ... Davies, M; + view all (2012) Indoor PM2.5 exposure in London's domestic stock: Modelling current and future exposures following energy efficient refurbishment. Atmospheric Environment , 62 336 - 343. 10.1016/j.atmosenv.2012.08.047. Green open access

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Abstract

Simulations using CONTAM (a validated multi-zone indoor air quality (IAQ) model) are employed to predict indoor exposure to PM2.5 in London dwellings in both the present day housing stock and the same stock following energy efficient refurbishments to meet greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets for 2050. We modelled interventions that would contribute to the achievement of these targets by reducing the permeability of the dwellings to 3 m3 m−2 h−1 at 50 Pa, combined with the introduction of mechanical ventilation and heat recovery (MVHR) systems. It is assumed that the current mean outdoor PM2.5 concentration of 13 μg m−3 decreased to 9 μg m−3 by 2050 due to emission control policies. Our primary finding was that installation of (assumed perfectly functioning) MVHR systems with permeability reduction are associated with appreciable reductions in PM2.5 exposure in both smoking and non-smoking dwellings. Modelling of the future scenario for non-smoking dwellings show a reduction in annual average indoor exposure to PM2.5 of 18.8 μg m−3 (from 28.4 to 9.6 μg m−3) for a typical household member. Also of interest is that a larger reduction of 42.6 μg m−3 (from 60.5 to 17.9 μg m−3) was shown for members exposed primarily to cooking-related particle emissions in the kitchen (cooks). Reductions in envelope permeability without mechanical ventilation produced increases in indoor PM2.5 concentrations; 5.4 μg m−3 for typical household members and 9.8 μg m−3 for cooks. These estimates of changes in PM2.5 exposure are sensitive to assumptions about occupant behaviour, ventilation system usage and the distributions of input variables (±72% for non-smoking and ±107% in smoking residences). However, if realised, they would result in significant health benefits.

Type: Article
Title: Indoor PM2.5 exposure in London's domestic stock: Modelling current and future exposures following energy efficient refurbishment
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.atmosenv.2012.08.047
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.atmosenv.2012.08.047
Language: English
Additional information: © 2012. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/
Keywords: PM2.5, Indoor, Dwelling, CONTAM, Exposure, Modelling
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1370062
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